Hip, Hip, Hooray for National Puzzle Day

puzzle pieces

I cannot — I repeat, cannot — resist a puzzle. And it doesn't matter what kind of puzzle it is — puzzle boxes, logic puzzles, crosswords, word searches, jigsaws or even riddles and mini mystery. I love the hidden secrets and the challenge of unlocking them. Get your puzzle geek going for National Puzzle Day on January 29, […]

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Guest Blog: Chicago’s First Lady on Reading to Kids


Today we're featuring a guest blog by Amy Rule, Chicago's first lady, who joins us to talk about the importance of reading with young people. When our children were young, they particularly enjoyed reading books with words that rhymed. I’m sure that’s the case for many children, and it’s part of what can make reading fun. […]

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Author of the Month Kwame Alexander

Author Kwame Alexander and his novel The Crossover

Identical twins Josh and Jordan couldn’t be more different – even on the basketball court where they both shine thanks to their dad’s pro ball experience – but their bond of brotherhood has always been strong. When a new beauty starts school, both boys fall head over heels, but she's only got eyes for one. […]

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Kwame Alexander Q & A

basketball question mark

Get to know the multi-talented writer, poet, teacher, inspirational speaker and January's Author of the Month, Kwame Alexander as he debunks five myths about his new book, The Crossover, talks about what got him started in writing and what inspires him. Where did you get your idea for this book? Six years ago in New York City, at […]

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Paddington Rides into Theaters

Source: Sarah Ackerman, Flickr

Paddington, beloved star of the classic British children's book series, arrives in theaters January 16, for his feature film debut. The film promises to capture the delightfully madcap bear's London hijinks with his adoptive family, the Browns. Paddington's story began when a BBC cameraman, Michael Bond, published A Bear Called Paddington in 1958, inspired by a stuffed bear he bought for […]

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Calling All Kid Inventors!

Invention notes for a mitten for holding hands

To be an inventor, all you have to do is find a problem and create a solution. Anyone can be an inventor! Celebrate Kid Inventors' Day on January 17 by reading about inventors—real and fictional—who may inspire you to crack open your inventors' notebook and start designing something new. Did you know that earmuffs, my […]

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Puppets in the Windy City

source: Antara365, flickr

Did you know that many believe the word "puppeteer," which describes a person who works with puppets, originated in Chicago?  Get ready for lots of puppeteers to visit our city this week for the first ever Chicago International Puppet Theater Festival!  The festival runs from January 14-25, with more than 50 performances happening at 13 […]

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Animal Heroes for Kids

illustration of dog carrying child to safety

In honor of our One Book, One Chicago selection, we're celebrating heroes of all kinds. Here are some fascinating books for young readers that focus on heroic animals. Animal Heroes is a gripping and inspiring collection of rescue tales. Read about a gorilla who protects a boy who fell into her zoo enclosure, a guide dog who saved her blind […]

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Our Picks for This Year’s Children’s Book Awards


Have you ever wondered who picks the best books of the year? Each year, librarians come together at the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting to choose the best books for children from among the thousands of books published that year. At CPL, we bring our librarians together ahead of time to decide which books we […]

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Light a Candle for Kwanzaa

Source: soulchristmas,

This time of year is all about creating shared memories with loved ones through holiday traditions. If you don't have a special cultural or familial holiday tradition, it's never too late to start one. Why not partake in the nearly 50-year-old tradition of Kwanzaa, a harvest festival of first fruits? Anybody can celebrate Kwanzaa; it's fun for the […]

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